Ken Shane’s Soul Serenade

The 8th Day

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: The 8th Day, “She’s Not Just Another Woman”

After nine years and well over 400 columns, I’ve decided to change Soul Serenade from a weekly to an occasional column. Obviously,...

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Roberta Flack and Donny Hathaway, “The Closer I Get to You”

When an artist dies too young it is always tempting to mourn not only the loss of his or her spirit but also the loss of the great work...

The Soul Children

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: The Soul Children, “The Sweeter He Is”

We’ve heard about one-hit wonders and even no-hit wonders but what about groups that had multiple hits and still manage to be...

Garland Green

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Garland Green, “Jealous Kind of Fella”

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about Danny White, a southern soul singer who toiled for years looking for a hit that proved elusive. This...

Curtis Mayfield

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Curtis Mayfield — Keep On Keeping On

Curtis Mayfield was 14 years old when he joined the group that would become the Impressions. He was born in Chicago in 1942 and by the time...

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Danny White, “Can’t Do Nothing Without You”

For every musician who becomes a household name, there are hundreds, probably even thousands who toil in clubs for many years, getting a...

Rufus Thomas

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Soul Serenade: Rufus Thomas, “Walking the Dog”

“His music … brought a great deal of joy to the world, but his personality brought even more, conveying a message of grit,...

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Linda Creed, Songwriter

“Linda Creed was such a sweet young lady. She started out wanting to be a singer and she wasn’t a bad singer but she was a...

Teddy Pendergrass

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Teddy Pendergrass, “Love T.K.O.”

Have you seen the new Showtime documentary Teddy Pendergrass: If You Don’t Know Me? I recommend it with a bit of reservation related...

Big Mama Thornton

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Big Mama Thornton, “Hound Dog”

Elvis Presley has been accused of cultural appropriation. Whether you believe that or not, there is no doubt that one of his breakthrough...

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: The Exciters, “Tell Him”

I’ve written about the Exciters before in this column, back in 2013. But that story was more of a reminiscence about my first band...

Lavern Baker

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Soul Serenade: Lavern Baker, “Tweedlee Dee”

There is no doubt that Atlantic Records played a huge role in exposing a wider audience to the sound of Rhythm & Blues. The label,...

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: The Capitols, “Cool Jerk”

  The summer of 1966. I spent it on the beach and Boardwalk in Atlantic City. Incredible music poured out of tinny sounding transistor...

Jimmy Soul

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Jimmy Soul, “If You Wanna Be Happy”

I chose this week’s song with some trepidation. It has been on my list of prospective features for a long time. The obvious reason is...

Nancy Wilson

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Nancy Wilson, “Face It Girl, It’s Over”

Happy New Year! During the holidays I decided to determine once and for all how long I’ve been writing this column. I searched the...

Aretha Franklin - "Silent Night"

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Aretha Franklin, “Silent Night” (Solo Piano Version)

Let’s face it, 2018 was not a very good year. The nation seemed to become even more divided and at times it felt like the whole world...

Harold Melvin and the Bluenotes

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes, “If You Don’t Know Me by Now”

Alright, I admit it. There’s more Philly Soul covered in this column than music from any other soul capitol. There are a few reasons...

Dee Dee Sharp

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Dee Dee Sharp, “Ride!”

Some glorious Philadelphia soul preceded the glory years of Philly Soul...

The Clovers

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Soul Serenade: The Clovers, “Love Potion No. 9”

The Clovers long, distinguished career began in 1946 and hasn't ended yet...

Edwin Hawkins Singers

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: The Edwin Hawkins Singers, “Ooh Child”

Two years after the Five Stairsteps brought a song of hope to the Top 10 the Edwin Hawkins Singers brought their gospel soul to it...

Gene Chandler

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Gene Chandler, “Groovy Situation”

Gene Chandler's career spanned the years from doo-wop to disco with lots of hits in between...

Dobie Gray

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Dobie Gray, “Drift Away”

"Drift Away" was a smash in 1973 and then again 30 years later...

The Delfonics

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: The Delfonics, “Ready or Not Here I Come (Can’t Hide From Love)”

Do you remember when you first fell in love with Philly Soul? For me, it was in 1968 because that was the year when the Delfonics’...

Otis Rush

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Otis Rush, “Homework”

Otis Rush died recently but not before leaving a lasting blues and soul legacy...

Stax '68

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Stax ’68 — A Memphis Story

1968 was a momentous year for the nation, the city of Memphis, and Stax Records...

The Joe Jeffrey Group

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: The Joe Jeffrey Group, “My Pledge of Love”

The Joe Jeffrey Group established themselves as one-hit-wonders with a 1969 hit...

Rose Royce

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Rose Royce, “Car Wash”

In 1977 Rose Royce's debut single rose to the top of the pop and R&B charts...

Hot Chocolate

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Hot Chocolate, “You Sexy Thing”

A soulful British band took a song to the upper reaches of the US charts in 1975...

The Vibrations

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: The Vibrations, “My Girl Sloopy”

"Sloopy" was a bigger hit for the McCoys but the Vibrations got there first...

Willie Tee

Ken Shane's Soul Serenade, Music

Soul Serenade: Willie Tee, “Thank You John”

Despite a lack of chart success, Willie Tee became a New Orleans legend...